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"Lawsons" Author Never

Listens To Serials

Miss Gwen Meredith, one of Australia's most successful writers of radio serials, rarely listens to the radio. "I especially avoid listening to serials," she said one day last week, during a brief visit to Sydney from her

country home near Moss Vale.

Miss Meredith (Mrs Ains- worth Harrison) is the author of the A.B.C. radio serial, "The Lawsons," which will end on Feb- ruary 25, and of its successor, "Blue Hills," due to be .begin on February 28.

She visited Sydney to watch the cast of "Blue Hills" record the first five episodes' of the new


Miss Meredith estimates that she earned between £.7,000 and £8,000 from "The Lawsons," in its five-year career, during which it became the only serial in the world to be" broadcast twice a day.

The story, which was launched originally by the A.B.C. as a form of propaganda for improving agricultural methods in the country, has been published in book form, and used as the basis of a cartoon strip.


Miss Meredith formerly typed all her own scripts. Recently she began using a dictaphone, and now produces serial episodes at I the rate of one an hour.

"It isn't as easy as it sounds,"

she said.

"I had to do a lot of study to keep up with modern methods in agnculture.

"Even so, errors sometimes crept in,

"Once I found I was two months out in harvesting time and had to change the harvest from wheat to sorghum to save the script.

"Another time, a correspondent wrote complaining that I had kept the Lawsons's shearing going far too long."

Miss Meredith began work as a serial writer nine years ago with between 200 and 300 episodes of "Fred and Maggie" and about 50 episodes of "Night Porter."

She has also written several

radio plays.

Miss Meredith is uncertain whether she will have the stamina to keep "Blue Hills" going for as long as "The Lawsons." '

"If anyone had told me at the beginning that 'The Lawsons' would ruh for five years I would have had hysterics," she said.

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